Are you in need of wisdom tooth removal but feel nervous or uncertain about scheduling an appointment for the big day? We understand your concern and we want to help comfort your worries by providing you with some facts about the procedure.
The truth is that most wisdom teeth removal isn't considered to be an emergency situation, but if one or more of your wisdom teeth are impacted and begin intruding on other teeth, you'll likely begin experiencing severe pain and unavoidable discomfort. When this happens, emergency wisdom tooth removal can help reduce pain and inflammation and prevent other potential problems from occurring such as infections, jaw soreness, and the shifting of your teeth.
What Are the Signs of Impacted Wisdom Teeth?
There's no one size fits all when it comes to recognizing signs that you have an impacted wisdom tooth, but in this situation, there are common symptoms leading up to need for removal. When determining whether you need emergency wisdom teeth removal or not, you may experience one or more of the following symptoms:
- Swollen or irritated gums
- Jaw pain
- Difficulty opening your mouth
- Bleeding or iron/metallic taste
- Cyst or sac-like puffiness towards the back of your mouth where fluid is building up
Contrary to popular belief, you may not experience any pain or issue with your wisdom teeth at a pre-teen to young adult age. While many patients do need to have their wisdom teeth removed from the ages of 15-25, plenty of people don't need them removed until much later in life. Everyone's body grows at a different rate, and that's why it's important for you to schedule an examination if you notice any swelling, discomfort, or signs that your wisdom teeth may be impacted.
When any of these symptoms occur you may notice that your mouth feels extra sensitive or sore when brushing your teeth or chewing food. That is completely normal and treatable. If you begin experiencing any of these signs, it's time to get an x-ray in order to determine the best course of action. If it appears that one or more of your wisdom teeth are growing at an angle towards your second molar, back of the mouth, towards other teeth, or trapped within your jawbone, it's likely that emergency wisdom tooth removal will be recommended depending on the risk continued growth poses towards your overall dental health.
Do You Absolutely Have To Have Your Wisdom Teeth Removed?
In some cases, having your wisdom teeth removed when they come in isn't necessary. However, if your wisdom teeth are impacted as they grow, it can and very likely will prevent adequate and necessary oral hygiene. Even if your wisdom teeth come in with no problems, you may develop an infection or tenderness in your gums if they're not cleaned properly and routinely. Since wisdom teeth are located so far back in the mouth and are difficult to reach, brushing and flossing can be awkward and frustrating.
In both cases where your wisdom teeth come in but cause an issue down the road, and when they become impacted, having them removed can save you a lot of time and trouble. If your wisdom teeth are impacted, they could cause shifting in your mouth which could lead to potential infections and oral health disease. If left untreated, gum disease and other infections can cause your jaw bone to slowly deteriorate.
Expectations of an Emergency Wisdom Teeth Extraction
When having your wisdom teeth removed, comfort and open communication with your dentist or oral surgeon are key. You should never feel pushed or misunderstood throughout the process. The surgical procedure is only one step in having those irritating teeth removed. When you first schedule an appointment with the belief you or a loved one may have an impacted tooth, here's what you can expect to happen.
- First, you'll schedule your appointment so that we can get you into the office and determine if there's a need for emergency wisdom teeth extraction. This helps us prioritize and better plan for the exact care you need.
- During the evaluation, we'll take x-rays to help determine the best treatment methods for your specific needs. Our team of experts will work with you to map out everything from the procedure, to your insurance, to making sure you have somebody available to drive you home afterwards should you need an IV anesthesia. In some cases, we may perform the surgery on the day of your evaluation if necessary.
- After successful extraction, we'll make sure you have any and all needed medication to ease any soreness or pain and plenty of gauze to help with bleeding. We'll also provide you with an ice pack to help reduce swelling and create an aftercare plan specifically for your needs.
- Once you've rested for a while following surgery, and we're certain there aren't any unexpected issues, you'll be discharged to go home where you rest, relax, and recover.
Following a wisdom teeth removal procedure, you can prepare to feel a slight soreness in your mouth for 3-4 days, with less soreness each day. During this time, be sure to take it easy in those few days as best you can. When lying down, propping yourself up can reduce bleeding. Foods such as mashed potatoes or ice cream may feel soothing to eat and foods with small grains should be avoided until you've recovered. You'll want to steer clear of drinking out of a straw to help prevent dry socket or any kind of infection from occurring. It's extremely important to exercise oral hygiene while recovering and to call us should your pain increase or you feel that something isn't right.
Now that you know a little bit behind the scenes about having your wisdom teeth removed, we hope you're feeling confident in scheduling your consultation. Our team is prepared to walk you through the steps as we determine how to best treat any irritation or mouth pain you may be experiencing. Schedule your appointment today or contact us with any questions you may have.